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2006-12-01 - 10:56 a.m.

An accelerated rate

Iím wearing a t-shirt today. A t-shirt. On December 1st. 70 frickiní degrees F.

I think global warning and Unevent really ruin my holiday season. Christmas equals snow in my world, or at least cold. Fire next to the tree. I canít get enthused about Christmas when itís 70 degrees.

And Unevent. Sigh. In Theo world, the weekend after Thanksgiving is for R&R. Resting & Relatives because youíre either with your relatives or you are resting from being with your relatives. In my heads, the next weekend, that first weekend in December, is AODís birthday and the weekend for Christmas decoration.

But, alas no. First weekend in December is Unevent. By the next weekend, Christmas is 2-3 weeks away and I feel like Iím behind and rushing to get into the Christmas spirit.

Now you know what I think about in the shower.

Where the devil have I been? Work and family.

November is Rolandís familyís big birthday, family palozza month. This year, all the siblings have worked for months to plan a surprise 70th birthday party for Mom. Our California clan couldnít make it, so we moved it to the weekend closest to her birthday.

Then, Mom bought the California clan plane tickets so theyíd be with her on their birthday. The weekend before party palozza. On the originally weekend we have planned. Without warning us in advance. So (a) the invitations were already sent so they *still* couldnít attend and (b) Mom-in-law plans a lovely weekend with our distant clan, with food, fun, old friends and activities every day.

Then the next weekend, unbeknownst to her, is party setup all week. My mom comes to the party cause my mom and mom-in-law get along famously having joined forces in the subtle please-have-grandchildren lobby. So my mom visits for five days convergent with all the party madness. Friday night setup, Saturday night party,

Lis is a wonderful friend and helps us out by tending bar and serving up food. Love the Melly.

Sunday night spoiled by wonderful father-in-law for intimate family dinner at the Inn at Little Washington. (Dwell happily on wonderfulness of the Inn. I love the Inn.)


To participate in each of these things was a one to two hour drive each way. I love my family and in-laws, I had a fabulous time at each activity, but Iím am so done with spending two hours on the road every day I have off.

Oh wait, I get to go to Unevent, five-six hour drive both ways. And today itís rainy and hot.

Speaking of days off, I think I can sneak out early today since Iíve been here 11 to 13 hours a day this week cause weíre just starting testing activities. Iíll have to work Sunday, but thatíll be better.

If youíve never been an engineer involved in building a huge complex system, let me describe it this way. Combine the punchness of your most intense team school project where youíre exhausted and ebullient simultaneously with barely controlled chaos caused by no one being on the same page. Now raise that to the power of three. Now add sugar and caffeine.

Meanwhile, our technical perfectionists writing checks the managers donít want to cash culminating in both sides treating the engineers on my level like ping-pong balls and being grumpy about it. We are so done.

After suffering for six-eight weeks, I think theyíve finally noticed efforts should be better coordinated. So theyíre going to improve the process. Soon. Probably be all smoothed out by the time my team is done so when the rest of the project catches up to us, theyíll get an easy ride.

I hate being first. And the irony is weíre not fast enough.

My t-shirt says I can only conclude that Iím paying off karma at a vastly accelerated rate.

It was probably not the best shirt to be wearing when our project manager randomly toured the building today, but cíest la vie. It was better than last Friday which said Iíve found you can get more with a kind word and a two-by-four than you can with just a kind word.

Iíd wear that one to Unevent if it wasnít in the wash.

But, I bid you adieu. Right now I have to go check on a test where we are spinning things in circles and we're very happy about that.

Scribble to Theo

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